ePay-Kenya: A Tried and Proven Way to Withdraw From PayPal in Kenya

The lack of a good and reliable way to withdraw money from PayPal in Kenya is one of the factors which hinder the average Kenyan’s potential to earn online most significantly. On Like Chapaa, we have had a long and hard struggle to try to find and identify the best way to withdraw from PayPal in Kenya. I believe that we have a contender for this title in e-Pay Kenya.

e-Pay Kenya opened its doors in January 2009 as e-pesa then rebranded in 2010 to ePAY-KENYA. Esther Kimani of e-Pay Kenya reached out to us to provide more information on what e-Pay does. This article is based on her information to us, and on good reports their customers.

e-Pay Kenya offers two ways to withdraw your hard-earned money:

1. Moneybookers
“We have an Merchant Agreement with Moneybookers allowing us to officially run a Money transfer website using their services. This explains why the moneybookers fee is lower (11%) than Paypal. We therefore do not operate under any fear of account limitation as we operate with blessings from Moneybookers. We deliver within the hour but often less,” says Esther Kimani of e-Pay Kenya.

2. Paypal
Esther continues, “We use a third-party gateway to avoid the direct interface with Paypal because we have experienced the danger of doing so (when we operated as e-pesa). This explains why the transaction charges are higher (14%) than Moneybookers but then our users enjoy the following benefits:

  1. Peace of mind when dealing with us as there is no possibility of our users’ accounts being limited by PayPal
  2. Our third-party gateway does fraud tests on our behalf to minimize fraudulent transactions.
  3. We have a strict KYC (Know Your Customer) policy. All our users have to send Identification Documents in order to have their accounts verified, thus allowing them to make transactions.
  4. We demand that users forward their Paypal Transaction Confirmation emails before they can cash their money. We use this document to authenticate the bona fide account holders. We have caught up with fraudsters who hack into unsuspecting paypal account holders’ accounts.
  5. Delivery within 24 hours but often less.”

The bulk of the fees are charged when you deposit money from Moneybookers/PayPal into e-Pay Kenya. Their charges at this time are as follows:


  • Deposit 11%
  • Withdrawal USD 3 irrespective of the amount


  • Deposit 14%
  • Withdraw USD 3 irrespective of the amount

It seems to me that e-Pay Kenya has a very well thought-out service. It is the best of all such businesses that I have come across so far. It is a bit pricey, but as we wait for PayPal to open itself up, e-Pay Kenya remains a good and reliable alternative.

What do you think of e-Pay Kenya?

As far as I know, the REAL e-Pay Kenya is at: www.epay-kenya.com

NOT: www.epaykenya.com


pesaDroidI came across a very interesting Android application for your mobile phone – pesaDroid.

As much as I loathe Safaricom sometimes, I cannot live without my MPESA. Problem is, MPESA text messages are deleted (by me) as soon as I get them …. which unfortunately means I often cannot keep a record of who paid me or what payments I made. Don’t even mention that I then have to spend Kshs 1/- to find out my MPESA balance. This is where pesaDroid comes in, it helps you to monitor your MPESA transactions. specifically, it offers the following features:

  1. Ability to scan your SMS inbox and retrieve MPESA transactions
  2. Ability to store the transaction data in an internal database so that evidence of a transaction persists even after the SMS is deleted.
  3. Ability to generate regular statements from these transactions
  4. Ability to send the statements to your email address.
  5. Ability to send us feedback for improvement of the service.

This nifty little app is available for sale on the Android market at Kshs 256.84

More information: pesaDroid

What do you think of pesaDroid?

TrINC Money : MPESA-PayPal Service [Updated]

I was a bit hesitant to write about this new service after the rise and fall of PayMPESA, but here goes:

Trinc Money seems to be a new service that allows you to transfer money to and from PayPal via MPESA. yes, this means that it lets you both withdraw and deposit money into PayPal using MPESA. Sounds good, eh?

Apart from the usual PayPal and MPESA fees, Trinc Money charges what seems to be a used to charge a standard flat Kshs 1000 transaction fee. Depending on how much you send, this can work out to be extremely cheap. But is it sustainable?

They have since updated their fees to 6.9% + KES.250

I worry about this service. Does it have the required blessing from PayPal? As far as I know, PayPal does not allow this kind of money transfer service. If your remember correctly, other services got around this issue by packaging themselves as selling “vouchers” which could be redeemed for money. This seems not to be the case with Trinc Money.

Additionally, PayPal is rumored to be very very close to launching fully in Kenya. Would this not outright kill TrincMoney?

I have reached out to Trinc Money for comment on both of the above.

I am sorry if I feel overly critical of TrINC Money, I am just being prudent. I am aware that PayPal frowns upon this kind of “money transfer” business working through PayPal and I would not want the readers of Like Chapaa to suffer any loss as a result of reading this article.

So, dear readers, what do you think of this? Has anyone tried to use Trinc Money?

Response from TrINC Money:

Trincmoney is neither a money transfer service nor a currency exchange service. What we do provide is a platform for registered PayPal users to send electronic PayPal value to the Trincmoney PayPal account. These funds are not withdrawn and are valid PayPal transactions initiated by registered PayPal users.

Upon a customer’s request, our service sends our customers electronic monetary value depicted in ones M-PESA Account representing an equal amount of Cash held by the MPESA Holding Company Limited and which may be redeemed through an M-PESA Agent for an equal amount of legal tender in the Republic of Kenya, to their MPESA registered mobile numbers. Note that MPESA electronic value is NOT legal tender.

With regard to money laundering, Trincmoney carries out the required due diligence on customers who send us money and who receive money from us.

If PayPal were to open up shop on Kenya it would be a blessing to a lot of people who use the Internet to send and receive money. Trincmoney will survive simply because a PayPal withdrawal takes 4 working days to effect while our service is effected within the hour. Also chances are that the charges will be higher.

I hope I have answered your queries. I have also read your blog on our service. Please note that we changed our rates and are now charging 6.9% + KES.250. Check out our Facebook Page and Twitter handle and sample some of our customer reviews.

Two Kinds of People in The World

Just read an amazing article by Chris Dixon:

You’ve either started a company or you haven’t. ”Started” doesn’t mean joining as an early employee, or investing or advising or helping out. It means starting with no money, no help, no one who believes in you (except perhaps your closest friends and family), and building an organization from a borrowed cubicle with credit card debt and nowhere to sleep except the office. It almost invariably means being dismissed by arrogant investors who show up a half hour late, totally unprepared and then instead of saying “no” give you non-committal rejections like “we invest at later stage companies.” It means looking prospective employees in the eyes and convincing them to leave safe jobs, quit everything and throw their lot in with you. It means having pundits in the press and blogs who’ve never built anything criticize you and armchair quarterback your every mistake. It means lying awake at night worrying about running out of cash and having a constant knot in your stomach during the day fearing you’ll disappoint the few people who believed in you and validate your smug doubters.

I don’t care if you succeed or fail, if you are Bill Gates or an unknown entrepreneur who gave everything to make it work but didn’t manage to pull through. The important distinction is whether you risked everything, put your life on the line, made commitments to investors, employees, customers and friends, and tried – against all the forces in the world that try to keep new ideas down – to make something new.

Which kind are you?

Is Your Business Failing?

1. Is the site live yet?

Yes: you’re likely failing, but at least you’ve got a chance of getting some feedback from real, live users, which may, if you’re smart and perceptive, decrease your chance of failure a little bit.

No: you’re failing.

2. Do you have free customers yet?

Yes: well, now you have a shot to establish relationships. And if you listen carefully and not pridefully, you just may have a tiny chance of hearing them correctly and improving your customer experience from awful to plausibly bearable.

No: you’re failing.

3. Do you have paying customers yet?

Yes: congratulations! You have reduced your chances of failing from 100% to 99%. There are many more chances to fail along the way, but you have graduated to some of the more interesting ones. Good show!

No: you’re failing.

If, when you wake up in the morning, the answer to any of the above questions is “no”, then you’re failing. Not failing tomorrow, or next month, or next year, but failing right now, today. As you read this…. Now.

And what you need to do, what you must do, is to spend your entire day focused on changing the answers to yes. Desperately, immediately, fully.”

The above is taken from How can I tell if I am failing at my entrepreneurial venture or start-up? Which is a very inspiring article on how to tell if your online business is failing.

How to Open a US Bank Account

This post was made possible by sobbayi.

There are many reasons why one may want to open a US bank account, including wanting to withdraw money from PayPal. Now to open a US based bank account as a none US resident is still possible.

The only catch is that you cannot open it online, you have to physically go into the bank with your passport and a second form of identification eg your DL (no need for social security number if you tell them you are not a resident).

You then fill the forms AT THE BANK and you set up you internet banking details right there as thats where all your transaction Bank transfers etc will take place.

Once you are done you must deposit some money into the account immediately and you will walk out with you temporary ATM card. You then need a Kenyan address and a US address. The US address is where they will send the permanent ATM card within 10 days and other documentation whenever they need to as they wont send it out of the country. Once you have your ATM card and are going back to Kenya there is a number you will need to call to activate your card to work in Kenya. Make sure you get that number before you leave the bank.

This information is based on Bank of America. (Not all banks offer accounts to non residents living abroad). Their ATM cards work just fine in Kenya but it will cost you 5 bucks ($5) per use so be careful.

KBC Interactive Game Show Fraud (with pics)

This article was generously contributed by Mutwiri.

Earlier this month there was a huge debate on this forum about an error KTN had made on their interactive game show. The issue was with the simple arithmetic – 11 x 2 + 32 – 21 + 5 x 3 + 5 x 1 The answer that won cash was 120, which off course was WAY off.

Well, yesterday KBC ran something similar on their show.

23 – 12 x 5 + 112 – 20 + 3 x 8 + 12

The choices were -125, -170 and 250

I took screen shots:

KBC interactive game show fraud

The Question (click for larger)

The answer that won Kshs.50,000 was 250

So how did they arrive at 250? Here’s their calculation:

KBC interactive game show fraud

The Fraudulent answer (click for larger)

If you look at the pictures closely, KBC actually changed the question and then awarded 50,000/- to….”the winner”. Theft in broad daylight!

What are your thoughts on this? Where can a complaint be made?

Even the fraudulent answer does NOT add up to 250!!!!